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Biomass-for-fuel sector not hitting other wood use

The use of biomass for fuel is not having an adverse impact on other wood users in the UK, according to a DECC report.

The report estimates that domestic demand for biomass is expected to remain steady at around 1.4 million oven dried tonnes to 2020, and the recent increase in biomass generation has been met through imports.

“The majority of woody biomass has been sourced from North America, primarily from existing forestry and processing practices,” it said.

”There is no indication that use of UK-sourced biomass for electricity is causing resource constraints for other UK wood users.”

The report notes that an increase in imported biomass is connected to the development of coal-to-biomass conversions, such as that at Drax in Yorkshire.

But it noted that, with a “relatively stable” UK supply base, biomass was not taking an increasing UK feedstock.

UK wood used for electricity and CHP generation is said to be “fairly constant”.

The report covers:

  • biomass conversion
  • biomass co-firing
  • biomass combined heat and power
  • dedicated biomass generators
  • those using woody biomass and energy crop feedstocks

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